Training In the Use of Force

Is this a result of poor training? Job stress? Emotional breakdown?

Is this what citizens expect from a professional police officer? I think most folks viewing this video would find it very disturbing. So should police officers.

As of today this video on YouTube already had over 185,000 viewings.

Let’s get this straight: To put on a badge is to be publicly accountable! There’s a true saying that a person’s character is what they do when no one’s looking.

Today’s professional police officer ALWAYS is to act like someone is looking — especially in light of today’s smart phones. A modern police officer is to act like he or she is ALWAYS on stage. 

How police properly use force in our democracy is an important (and trainable) skill. It is absolutely essential for police to be able to control their use of force. It is a sacred trust.

When police are viewed as improperly using force, whether in collective or individual encounters, they erode the public’s trust — and, hence, their support, cooperation, and ultimately, the effectiveness of the entire police agency.

Police leaders must be sure their officers are properly trained in the use of force and restraint not only during their initial training but continually throughout their years of service.

While I am a strong proponent of educated police, I also am a strong proponent of martial arts training. Early in my career I was puzzled by the fact that very few of the officers with whom I worked regularly trained in a martial art. To me, it was an essential tool of my profession — to be able to effectively control someone without getting angry and losing control.

I have often said the proper response to resistance in an arrest situation is essentially surgical-like in its application; a trained and practiced procedure that applies force to overcome resistance.

The goal of a trained martial artist is to learn to be comfortable in conflict and resistance situations without loosing their “cool” or composure. Or, as I learned as a student of Taekwondo, to demonstrate “character, sincerity, effort, etiquette, and self-control.”

A good value set for any police officer.

For more news on this event, CLICK HERE.

What do you think?


[Here’s part of my journey in the Asian martial arts. I began as a high school and college wrestler. In the Marines, I stated to study Judo. After my tour in the Marines and became a police officer, I began studying Taekwondo. In later years, I took up Judo again organizing a youth Judo club in Madison. Later, I studied Kendo, Aikido and the Japanese sword (Katori).]

My first teacher, Dr. Kyu Chang Park (early 60s).
My first teacher, Dr. Kyu Chang Park (early 60s).
Minneapolis Police Karate Club (1968)
Minneapolis Police Karate Club. I was the chief organizer and instructor, 2nd row, far right.
Minneapolis Police Tactical Squad.
Minneapolis Police Tactical Squad. I’m on the far right. Dr Park, far left.
Madison Taekwondo School under Master Jae Bok Chung in the late 1970s. I am on top row, far right. To my right is Chung and Grandmaster Son. Taekwondo training was part of the six month police academy in Madison.
jaebok chung
World Taekwondo Association master instructors. Grandmaster Duk Sung Son on far left. Jae Bok Chung (4th from left) and me (5th from left). Late 70s.
I am on the far right, with fellow instructors from the United States Judo Association training at the National Judo Institute in Colorado Springs. I was also active as a judo player and teacher and founded the Madison (Wisc.) Judo Association. The USJA founder, Phil Porter, is second from the left. (Circa 1990s.)
With my Kendo teacher, Dr. Joji Atone.
With my Kendo teacher and lifelong friend, Dr. Joji Atone.
More recently, practicing Aikido and Japanese sword.
More recently, practicing Aikido and Japanese sword with Sensei Kurt Lifka.
ninja priest closeup
Today practicing Katori Shinto Ryu.

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